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Given the history of malpractices and the public perception of the corruption plagued Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC). Minister of State, Petroleum, Dr. Ibe Kachikwu, has accused the Group Managing Director, Mr. Maikanti Baru, of corruption and highhandedness.
Kachikwu in a letter dated August 30, 2017 and addressed to President Muhammadu Buhari, accused Baru of completely eroding all the reforms he introduced in the corporation during his time and running a one-man show in awarding contracts against due process.
“Mr President in over one year of Dr baru’s tenure, no contract has been run through the NNPC board, Kachikwu alleged in copies of the letter cited by Per Second News.
“The legal and procedural requirement is that all contracts above $20m would need to be reviewed and approved by the board of NNPC.”
“This is despite my diplomatic encouragement to Dr Baru to do so to avoid wrongfully painting you as a President who does not allow due process to thrive in NNPC.
“Given the history of malpractices and the public perception of NNPC as having a history of non-transparency, the NNPC tenders board, NTB, cannot be the final clearance authority for contracts it enters into.”
“The following major contracts were never reviewed by or discussed with me or the NNPC board:
“1, The Crude Term Contracts valued at over $10billion;
“2, The DSDP Contracts with over $5billion;
“3,The Akk Pipeline Contract valued at $3billion;
“4,various financing allocation funding contracts with the NOCs valued at $3billion and;
“5,various other NPDS production service contracts valued at between $3-4billion.”
The minister also alleged that the NNPC GMD made appointments and postings without consulting or briefing members of the “board service committee whose function is to review potential appointment”.
Recall that President Buhari appointed Kachikwu as NNPC GMD in August 2015 but replaced him with Baru a year later.
The Letter reads in part: “Like the previous reorganisations and repostings (sic) done since Mr Baru resumed as GMD, I was never given the opportunity before the announcements to discuss these appointments. This is so despite being the minister of state petroleum and chairman, NNPC board.
“The board of NNPC which you appointed and which has met every month since its inauguration, and which by the NNPC is meant to review these planned appointments and postings, was never briefed. Members of the board learnt of these appointments from the pages of social media and the press release of NNPC.
“Indeed, in anticipation of vacancies that would arise from retiring senior executives of NNPC, I wrote the GMD a letter requesting that we both have prior review of the proposed appointments. Not only did he not give my letter the courtesy of a reply, he proceeded to announce the appointments without consultation on board concurrence.
“Mr President, please note that there is a board service committee whose function is to review potential appointment and termination of senior staff prior to implementation. This committee was also not consulted.
“The open administration I introduced with your support in our year of pushing reforms, has been completely eroded. NNPC staff are afraid of contacting me for the fear of being punished, sidelined in appointments and targeted.
“The effect of the attitude of the GMD and the sidelining of the board is that there is a fear culture in NNPC.”